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Plans to help Govt write savings policy

A new group, Saving New Zealand, has been launched by the Investment Savings and Insurance Association to establish a broad consensus on savings.

Monday, May 26th 2003, 1:05AM

by Philip Macalister

The Investment Savings and Insurance Association (ISI) has launched a programme which is effectively designed to create a savings policy for the government.

The initiative, called Saving New Zealand, is designed to be a partnership with a much wider membership than just the savings industry. Other groups including employers and business are being encouraged to join it.

ISI chief executive Vance Arkinstall says the partnership has come about as the industry has got nowhere talking amongst itself.

He says it is time to take the discussion to a wider level. It is also appropriate it happens this year as the Periodic Review Group is doing its six-yearly report on the country’s savings framework this year.

”Saving New Zealand is intended to shift the current inertia around savings to a broader vision, with the objective of achieving an integrated savings framework for New Zealanders by the end of 2003.”

“This (partnership) is not a mass marketing or advertising campaign telling people to save more. It’s a process to develop a savings framework for New Zealand, and then to look at some of the policy options in more detail,” ISI chairman and Sovereign managing director Simon Swanson says.

The idea is that it will come up with a detailed savings framework.

“(It) will set out savings policies, the regulatory environment that protects savers, and the role of all the key players so that people know what to expect and what they need to do themselves,” Swanson says.

Finance minister Michael Cullen has said he wants to make “incremental” changes to superannuation. However, that plus the ‘You must save for your retirement’ advertising approach doesn’t work.

“Getting people to save more isn’t something that the Government can do with a new policy here and there. And having financial institutions hammering people with the ‘save more’ message certainly doesn’t work,” ISI deputy chairman, and AMP New Zealand managing director Ross Kent says.

Arkinstall says the partnership, which includes a proposed Savings Summit later this year, has been positively received by other parties including Business New Zealand and the Council of Trade Unions. Finance minister Michael Cullen has also expressed support for the summit idea.

More stories
Minister hi-jacks summit
Saving in New Zealand – Some background facts
What is Saving New Zealand.

« Edinburgh looking at its optionsSovereign takes regulation bull by the horns »

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